Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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CASEY, Silas, soldier, born in East Greenwich, Rhode Island, 12 July, 1807 ; died in Brooklyn, New York, 22 January, 1882. He was graduated at the United States military academy in 1826, and, entering the 2d infantry, served on frontier and garrison duty till 1836, becoming first lieutenant on 28 June of that year. He distinguished himself under Worth in the Semi-hole war of 1837-'42, and was made captain 1 July, 1839. In the Mexican war he was brevetted major, 20 August, 1847, for his gallant conduct in the battles of Contreras and Churubusco, and was at Molino del Rey and the storming of Chapultepec, where he was severely wounded while leading the assaulting column. For his conduct here he was brevetted lieutenant colonel, 13 September, 1847, and he was thanked by the Rhode Island legislature for his services during the war. After this he was engaged on frontier and recruiting service most of the time till the civil war. He was made lieutenant colonel of the 9th infantry, 3 March, 1855, was member of the board for examining breech-loading arms in 1854-'5, and commanded Puget sound district, Washington territory, from 1856 till 1857. He was made brigadier-general of volunteers, 31 August, 1861, and charged with organizing and disciplining the volunteers in and near the capital. He was afterward assigned a division in General Keyes's corps of the Army of the Potomac, and, occupying with it the extreme advance before Richmond, received the first attack of the enemy at Fair Oaks, 31 May, 1862, for which he was brevetted brigadier-general, United States army, and made major general of volunteers. From 1863 till 1865 he was president of the board for the examination of candidates for officers of colored, troops, and on 13 March, 1865, was brevetted major general in the regular army. In 1867 he again received the thanks of the Rhode Island legislature for his services in the rebellion, and especially for his bravery, skill, and energy at the battle of Fair Oaks. In 1862 the southern pa-pets published a letter from General Casey to Sec. Stanton, said to have been found in the former's tent at Fair Oaks, and proposing a plan for the permanent military occupation of the south by an army of 160,000 men after the rebellion should be over. He was retired from active service on 8 July, 1868, and served on the retiring board, New York City, till 26 April, 1869. He published "Sys-tern of Infantry Tactics" (2 vols., New York, 1861) and " Infantry Tactics for Colored Troops" (1863). His son, Silas, born in Rhode Island, 11 September, 1841, was graduated at the United States naval academy, Annapolis, in 1860, became master in 1861, lieutenant in 1862, lieutenant-commander in 1866, and commander in 1874. He was attached to the steamer " Wissahickon" in 1861, and was in the first attack on Fort Sumter and various engagements with the batteries in Charleston harbor. He was equipment officer at the Washington navy-yard in 1882-'4, light-house inspector in 1885, and in 1886 commanded the receiving-ship "Dale."
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